Is this you when your smartphone is out of reach?
The other day, we reported on how our brains are changing to keep up with the fast pace of the technology we’re exposed to. It was a really interesting blog entry – you should read it right now instead of doing work!
The salient point of the article – the whole inspiration behind it, in fact – is the idea that we’re slowly becoming so reliant on technology and fast-paced information that if it all came crumbling down tomorrow, most of us would have a brain incapable of effectively functioning in a tech-free world.
Ever watched Ben Fogle’s New Lives in the Wild? It’s a show that charts the lives of awesome folks who’ve chosen to live off the grid in tough, mostly self-sufficient environments around the world. But here’s the thing – every single person he visited had an internet connection. In theory, they could use a sell my mobile service like ours from their remote locations (all had a way of receiving and sending post, albeit a bit longwindedly)
Our point being that technology reaches far and wide, but is it a case of too much of a good thing for most of us regular non-hunter-gatherer types? Whatever you thing about how much technology influences your life, here are five ways to give living at least a little tech-free a game stab!
1. Track your usage
For most of us, using technology is a mix of work and play. Record your usage throughout a week or so to see how much check email at work, browse your Twitter feed, scroll through Reddit posts and generally claw at the internet for entertainment. It might be a nasty surprise!
2. Make good decisions about which you tech you love and which you leave
We’re all guilty of downloading apps that seem a good idea at the time but simply serve to stuff our phone with unwanted nonsense. Review the technology hardware and software you allow into your life, use us to sell mobile phones and other bits that have no place!
3. Don’t let technology be a substitute for your presence
A Facebook Like is pretty awesome (we’d like some more on our Facebook page, please!) but there’s nothing like standing there in front of your mate saying with your human voice “Dude! I too love how Grumpy Cat looks like your nan when it’s Christmas!”
We’re not talking about how you always said you wanted to travel around China with your mates, but you all had kids and jobs and it’s unlikely to happen now. We’re talking about making minimal commitments to your nearby mates to have a catch up! Come on, people, factor in some human contact (non-work related!) every day!
4. Remove temptation
When it’s tech-free time, don’t walk around with your Blackberry in your pocket! It might sound a bit kindergarten-y, but try putting all those clever little devices in a safe, out of sight place for a while.
5. Create tech-free windows every day
“Every day? But what if someone posts a nice picture of a beach they want to go to on Instagram and I’m not the first to comment?!”
Making good decisions about what technology brings to your life isn’t just about the hardware. You may have decided to sell your mobile, trade in your Xbox 360 or sell Macbook devices that see nothing more than the daily Facebook timeline browse, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need to manage time responsibly.
Set areas or times of the day when technology is off the table. Mornings can actually be pretty stress-free if you don’t let the TV, smartphone or call of Facebook on the laptop slow you down! Medical types and sleep experts (oh, to be one of those!) tend to recommend not waking up or going to bed on technology, so no morning Facebook browsing and no just-before-bed trawling through StumbleUpon!
Got any more tips? Let us know in the comments section!